Yerba mate, also called mate, is a popular drink similar to coffee or tea. It's made from the leaves of the Ilex paraguariensis plant and contains caffeine.

Caffeine and other chemicals in yerba mate can stimulate the brain, heart, muscles lining blood vessels, and other parts of the body.

People use yerba mate for athletic performance, memory and thinking skills, headache, fatigue, and many other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support these uses.

Using yerba mate long-term, especially with alcohol or nicotine, has been linked to an increased risk of various types of cancer, including stomach, kidney, lung, and mouth cancer. Don't confuse yerba mate with caffeine or other caffeine sources, such as green tea, black tea, and guarana.

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